I am a clinical psychologist and a leadership development coach (worked for Vistage International) As such I led a lot of peer groups and am a skilled facilitator. I have also done some teaching, but my skills are more as a facilitator. My background in foreign policy is nil. I am a concerned citizen who wants to learn about these issues and find I learn even more when leading a group. I took the course first at Learning in Retirement at Tufts University and then taught it myself for two years at the Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement. I've done this both in person and on Zoom.
Great Decisions is America’s largest discussion program on world affairs with content created by the Foreign Policy Association. If you are hungry for thought provoking discussions on world issues, many with serious implications for America, this course is for you. The program cover’s eight topics which will be presented in the eight sessions.
The topics for 2023 are as follows: Global Famine, Climate Migration, Energy Geopolitics, Economic Warfare, War Crimes, Politics in Latin America, China and the U.S., and Iran at the Crossroads. The authors of the briefing book are working on those topics so that the book can be available sometime in early January. I will let you know when it is available for purchase. Prior to COVID the FPA in conjunction with PBS produced a documentary to accompany each topic. That was halted and we used the Power Point lectures created by Professor Jeffery Morton on each topic. We found this to be a great way to augment the briefing book information. However, it is still wonderful when a topic expert emerges from the group. So please let me know if any of these are your personal area of expertise and hopefully you can help to teach that segment. Certainly everyone’s expertise will contribute greatly to the class discussions.
Discussion, led by the study group facilitator Carol Kunik, will begin with the current situation including conflicting goals, benefits vs costs, opposing geopolitical interests, etc. Then the conversations will move into implications for the future. Should U.S. Policy be modified and if so, how? Some topics have sub-set topics appropriate for breakout group discussions and reporting key points back to the class.
The reading for the class will be the Great Decisions 2023 Briefing Book paperback, $35 from the Foreign Policy Association. There is also a digital possibility of the book available for Kindle from Amazon. That one is only about $23.00.
The reading prep for the class is only about 10 pages a week but is very helpful to understanding the material and contributing to the class discussion.